The Village View

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

HP to buy Mercury Interactive for $4.5 bln

HP is buying Mercury Interactive Corp a $800M (revenue) developer of infrastructure management software for $4.5B. They are largely regarded as the market leader in functional testing software, an area from which they derive 2/3 of their revenues. Their main products in this area include: QuickTest Professional, WinRunner and Quality Center. Mercury has over 17,500 customers.

Mercury was delisted from the NASDAQ in January. It's CEO and CFO resigned late last year after an internal investigation into option granting practices.

Rumor has it that Oracle has also expressed interest in acquiring Mercury.

The deal, which sent shares of the No. 2 personal computer maker down 4 percent, should help boost sales of HP's OpenView systems management software, which makes it easier for far-flung businesses to monitor the hardware, software and networks running throughout their organizations.

The purchase of the former star Israeli technology company also puts HP in closer competition with other major systems management software providers, including IBM's (IBM.N: Quote, Profile, Research) Tivoli unit, CA Inc.'s (CA.N: Quote, Profile, Research) UniCenter and BMC Software (BMC.N: Quote, Profile, Research).